Macbook Pro 16 and Blender 2.8


I am going to buy a laptop for video/photo editing and Blender. I would prefer a macbook pro 16, but from my understanding macbooks are not that good for Blender. But how bad are they? Are they just slow at rendering, or are they bad at other areas as well?


It’s just the rendering. You will have to render on the CPU…for now.
(It will change during this year, when the first Metal renderers are available.)
All the rest works perfectly fine.
I do all my Blender work on a Mac.

The new MacBook Pro does look very interesting indeed… :yum:


You can install the Radeon ProRenderer:

Then you have metal and the speed is good. Only with the Radeon ProRenderer the graphics card is addressed.

Only if someone supports macOS, we will be able to work reasonably with Blender in the future. But that is not certain …

Blender only runs at full speed under Windows and Linux.

Last time I checked there were still some issues, unfortunately. Some nodes not working and so on.
So you got to try if it works for you. For me it’s not there yet.

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Crashes very often. :smiley: But now the rendering is 4 times faster again :slight_smile:

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Ahhhhh…4 times faster!! Sounds heavenly… :innocent:
Is it usable for production? Do all the color nodes work?

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OK for small things, I guess. Nodes work better and better. We go off-topic :slight_smile:

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Oh sorry. :zipper_mouth_face:

But then again - this might also be interesting for the OP…

If you purchase it for 3d in general, I can recommend Huawei matebook x pro.
I bought it a year ago and still love it.

Apple is not a good choice for 3d pgms at all.

We can only hope for a miracle and Metal will be the hit. :slight_smile:

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Few ideas:

  1. bootcamp and windows with macs you have seamless dualboot then add a eGPU or use openCL under windows

  2. render local with using low sample and denoise for ver fast rendering and use the cloud for high quality final render

not ideal but not a deal breaker either

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The next miracle is on its way. :slightly_smiling_face:

Thank you all for comments so far. As I understand the problem with mac and Blender is hardware related right? Not OS?

I will be using it for photoshop and video editing (Davinci or Premiere) as well. The matebook looks like a nice machine, but I am not sure about that GPU.

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Its certainly tempting :slight_smile:

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If you bootcamp windows then it would work as good as any laptop. MacOS is the problem.

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Honestly, I would choose the machine with your preferred OS.
For me that’s the more important difference. You got to feel comfortable with it. And don’t want to get into sorting out issues on an OS you’re not familiar with. Wasted creative time, that would be. :wink:
Especially for a laptop, since you’ll also have your emails and stuff there, most probably.
It doesn’t sound as if you would use it mostly as a rendering machine, anyway.

If you’re comfortable with Windows and are really looking into doing a lot of CG - go for a Windows laptop.

If you prefer MacOS…I would not hesitate, to get a 16" MacBook Pro.
I did lot’s of renders, and even some long animations, on my Mac. Yes you will wait longer to render (for now).
For still images this doesn’t matter so much. You can render over night, lunch break or whatever.
And for animations you just have to arrange it cleverly. You can always find solutions.

(I have a blog about doing the CG for a whole feature on a Mac, here on BA. There you can see me constantly looking for solutions, ha, ha, ha. In the end it always works somehow.)

Plus, as mentioned here…the GPU rendering situation on Mac is most probably getting much better this year.


GPU is nvidia mx150 with 2gb. Try it! When unsatisfied return it. I use the device when doing small changes while I got no workstation around. The whole device has very good build quality. Especially the keyboard is much superior compared to apples. The screen is 3000x2000 and got a multitouch. Another god thing: the x pro got a standard USB port to.

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also as Jolly sais:

Windows hardware has a price point and flexibility advantage that is simply not disputable.

For me the reason why I still work on hardware from 2008 2010 and 2012 is that I simply prefer macOS. I work with windows 10 dual boot however too. That is a nice feature of macs has a hardware platform. A hackintosh could do it to but is more risky.

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The problem with Mac and Blender is complicated. But basically Apple changed a lot in it’s OS, and developers are pissed and hesitating to go down that Metal road. Which is a shame, because Mac hardware is usually nice, durable and reliable. I am NOT talking about the butterfly keyboards of the Macbook Pros :wink:

I just got an insanely expensive and nice Macbook Pro 16. As soon as I switch to Workbench or Eevee shading I could cry, because performance is so bad. Solid shading is OK, but basically Blender doesn’t feel optimized for macOS at all.

I don’t know if the Blender Foundation is actively seeking developers who can take the challenge and make Blender on Macs as great as it was. But it would be the right time to do so, since funds are steadily incoming and Blender never felt worse on Macs as today.

Oh and if there is an easy way to improve viewport performance on the MBP 16 with Catalina please share them here :slight_smile: